Tuesday, May 06, 2008

I Retract a Previous Blog Statement

I always thought (and have said) Spanish was harder than English. I even vented about it in an earlier post. You have 30,000 plus verb forms compared to our 3,000 some. There are two ways to say the word “for” and nouns and adjectives are assigned to be masculine or feminine and the way you say the word “the” corresponds according to the gender assignment. Clearly then, my line of thought went, Spanish was the harder language.

I have since seen the light. Allow me to explain.

First, pronunciation. In Spanish, pronunciation never changes, what you see is what you get. English, we have words spelled nothing like they look. Letters in English change sounds frequently… soft a, hard a, somewhere in between a. Consider the name Abraham. Three different sounding a’s. In Spanish, Abraham has the same “a” sound across the board.

And while I could go on with many more examples (window v. widow) or the different (there, their or two, too, to, or bear, bare, OK ENOUGH!) I will close my argument with the true deal sealer: the verb get.

Consider this. In English, the verb get can be used as follows:

  1. To obtain (Can I get the list?)
  2. To contact (I got in touch with my friend.)
  3. To leave something like a vehicle (I just got off the train.)
  4. To reach (When you get to the street, turn left.)
  5. To buy (Can I get a cup of coffee?)
  6. To recover (I hope you get better soon!)
  7. To Return (He can’t wait to get back to Albuquerque).
  8. To Receive (I got the fax this morning.)
  9. To Prepare (I need to get ready before I leave.)
  10. To Begin (Let’s get started at seven).
  11. To board (Get on the first bus that passes).

I tried showing it’s complication to a friend here by writing this paragraph…

I need to get in contact with a travel agent so I can get a plane ticket and get back to Ecuador. When I get off the plane, I walk until I get to Customs. I don’t get why it takes so long. But I wait, get my documents ready, and think about the newspaper I will get at the store outside When I read the paper, I always hope the world is getting better. It’s not. I get a taxi, and get ready for my meeting. I get out and see my boss who doesn’t say hello, just asks “Shall we get started?” As soon as I get onto my office floor, I already wish I was somewhere else!

English is hard. You get what I am saying?

1 comment:

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